The coach’s directions were clear: "the workout for tomorrow is 800-meter repeats, six of them with a 400-meter recovery between each. You are to run the 800s at your 10K pace."
What? I haven’t run a 10K race in a couple of years. How do I know what pace that should be? I have run a 5k and a half marathon but how do those paces translate to a 10K pace?
I made those statements when I first started doing some speed work. However, I was lucky, my coach helped me understand paces. That same coach has just released a ‘free’ app at the Apple App store that takes the guesswork out of finding the right training paces. Even breaking every pace into 100-meter segments.
The basics of the app are: plug in your most recent race of any distance and hit ‘calculate’ and it gives the training pace you need. But not just a pace but the exact time you need to run the distance and every 100m that makes up the distance.
The app is “TrackSplits.”
Let me walk you through a few screenshots. I will use a 5K race time and 1/2 marathon time. Notice that the workout paces will differ depending on the race time you use. Both show for a 10K pace workout breaking them down into 100-meter segments.
5K finish time = 00:24:00
1/2 Marathon = 2:00:00
One important note. Using a watch instead of GPS to run the track workouts requires that you break the track down into four equal sections. Most tracks have these marks but if not you can pick out some track landmarks to us. Example:
- start half-way in the straight
- 1st 100 will be half-way in the corner
- 2nd 100 halfway in the back straight
- 3rd 100 halfway in the next corner
- 4th 100 is the start line.
A personal note on using these 100-segment times. For the 800-meter workout, I use the 400-meter splits and hit my lap button at the conclusion of each lap. I then only have to remember four numbers not eight: 32", 1'05", 1'37", and 2'10".
There is a post coming in a couple days explaining why it is important to break down these track laps into 100-meter segments.
Runner friends, go to the app store and get TrackSplits.